Many people are shocked to learn that applications to universities abroad can take anywhere between 6-9 months.
It’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon. And, to do well, you need to have a proper plan in place.
The good news is your future does not depend on the outcome of a single exam. One bad day doesn’t ruin you. You can do many things to put up a winning application in the end.
First things first – you need to follow the timeline so that you do not lose track of multiple things that need to be completed. Applying late or very close to deadlines can be detrimental to success. You do not want to do that.
What is the best time to apply to maximize your chances of admit? When should you take GRE? How long should you work on your SOP and essays? If you have all these questions, you are in the right place.
MS in USA application process can be overwhelming and cumbersome. So, here we have tried to put up an easy to understand timeline so that you can keep a tab on what needs to be completed when.
Discipline and time management is key to cracking your dream schools. And it starts from TODAY.
Take by end of Aug so that you have enough time to retake if necessary
Retake GRE if required by end of Sep (need 21 days between reattempts)
by end of Sep – mid Oct. Here’s full post on how to shortlist schools.
Drop emails to relevant Professors you are interested to work with (especially for people interested in research) by mid of Oct.
Apply for WES
If any of your shortlisted schools require a WES evaluation, apply for it by the end of Oct since it can take a month or more to get their results.
Check for scholarships
There are some third party scholarships available for MS applicants. Search these by end of Oct (so that you can apply by their stated deadlines)
from your undergraduate college by end of Oct
Finalize SOP, essays and LORs
by mid Nov
Fill the application online and send application packets where required
by end of Nov – mid Dec
Follow up on the status of your applications
and if the required material has been received by the schools in Jan. Resend if anything is amiss
by end of Mar-Apr
Submit financial docs for I-20
by end of Apr
Finalize your school and apply for education loan
Appear for visa interview
by end of June
Arrive on the campus
by Aug (2 weeks earlier if you need to look for funding on campus)
That’s it – it is not as cumbersome if you know what to expect. Save this infographic for a quick reminder.
For personalized assistance for your applications, check our counseling packages.